Downwelling


Downwelling

Downwelling is the process of accumulation and sinking of higher density material beneath lower density material, such as cold or saline water beneath warmer or fresher water or cold air beneath warm air. It is the sinking limb of a convection cell. Upwelling is the opposite process and together these two forces are responsible in the oceans for the thermohaline circulation. The sinking of cold lithosphere at subduction zones is another example of downwelling in plate tectonics.

Downwelling occurs at anti-cyclonic places within the ocean where warm rings are spinning clockwise creating surface convergence.

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  • downwelling — noun The sinking of a higher density medium through a lower density one …   Wiktionary

  • downwelling — noun the downward movement of fluid …   English new terms dictionary

  • downwelling — /down wel ing/, n. Oceanog. a downward current of surface water in the ocean, usually caused by differences in the density of seawater. [1965 70; DOWN1 + WELL2 + ING1] …   Useful english dictionary

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